Are you manifesting from circumstances, or from First Cause?

More wisdom from Thomas Troward. From his magnum opus, the Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science, Troward here discusses a crucial aspect to using the Law of Attraction effectively. We must train our mind to make use of First Cause – that is, the originating spiritual energy from which all things are created – and not concern ourselves with the web of circumstances – or secondary causes – that we find ourselves presently entangled in. After all, all of these secondary causes are simply the result of our use or misuse of first cause:

“But now when investigation has shown us that conditions are never causes in themselves, but only the subsequent links of a chain started on the plane of the pure ideal, what we have to do is to reverse our method of thinking and regard the ideal as the real, and the outward manifestation as a mere reflection which must change with every change of the object which casts it. For these reasons it is essential to know whether we are consciously making use of first cause with a definite purpose or not, and the criterion is this. If we regard the fulfilment of our purpose as contingent upon any circumstances, past present, or future, we are not making use of first cause; we have descended to the level of secondary causation, which is the region of doubts, fears and limitations, all of which we are impressing upon the universal subjective mind with the inevitable result that it will build up corresponding external conditions. But if we realise that the region of secondary causes is the region of mere reflections we shall not think of our purpose as contingent on any conditions whatever, but shall know that by forming the idea of it in the absolute, and maintaining that idea, we have shaped the first cause into the desired form and can await the result with cheerful expectancy.

It is here that we find the importance of realising spirit’s independence of time and space. An ideal, as such, cannot be formed in the future. It must either be formed here and now or not be formed at all; and it is for this reason that every teacher, who has ever spoken with due knowledge of the subject, has impressed upon his followers the necessity of picturing to themselves the fulfilment of their desires as already accomplished on the spiritual plane, as the indispensable condition of fulfilment in the visible and concrete.

When this is properly understood, any anxious thought as to the means to be employed in the accomplishment of our purposes is seen to be quite unnecessary. If the end is already secured, then it follows that all the steps leading to it are secured also.”

When we find ourselves doubting the possibility of our desires coming true, whether because of existing circumstances or past experiences, let us remember Troward’s wisdom. All our existing adverse circumstances, negative past experiences, personality traits or whatever excuse we may make for why things will not go our way – all these are nothing but the experience that flows from our past use of first cause. Let us erase those experiences and circumstances and create new ones, by remembering that the infinite intelligence that creates worlds cares not one whit for any of it. What may seem impossible for us is nothing to it.

Limitations are imposed upon our lives only because we believe in the circumstances, and thereby give them tangible reality. “I’m too shy for that”, we say. “I’ve always had bad luck in that area”, “people just don’t like me”, or “I don’t have the gumption to put that into practise.” Whatever excuses we make for why our desires cannot come true becomes absolutely real to us. But these limitations are not inherent in our constitution – they are self perpetuated because we take them as our starting point, instead of rising above them with First Cause.

It’s like a gramophone record that’s stuck in a particular groove. While the needle is stuck, it’s impossible to ever hear anything else from the record. All the most diligent efforts in the world will not make it play something new. Most of us are playing a stuck record in our heads that contains all the limiting programming that keeps our life stuck in a groove. Instead of trying to work within the confines of that stuck groove, we need to grab the tonearm and change the track to a more favourable one – or smash the record altogether!